Rams CB Derion Kendrick to practice Friday, may play Sunday following arrest

THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. — Los Angeles Rams cornerback Derion Kendrick will practice Friday and could play on Sunday against the Pittsburgh Steelers, coach Sean McVay said.

Kendrick was arrested early Monday morning and charged with two counts involving possession of a firearm, which include carrying a concealed firearm and carrying a loaded firearm, according to the L.A. City Attorney’s office. The Los Angeles Times reported on Wednesday afternoon that they are misdemeanor charges. An arraignment date is set for Dec. 5.

Kendrick, 23, participated in the Rams’ walkthrough on Thursday morning but did not practice. He also spoke with McVay privately that morning, and with defensive coordinator Raheem Morris late Wednesday night.

“I think, based on the information that I got (and) the conversation that we were able to have, I think (we) use it as a learning opportunity,” said McVay on Friday. “I think there are certain circumstances and situations that arise that you always use your values and principles to be able to make decisions.

“I trust this kid’s heart. I believe in him. I also believe in forgiveness and understanding. There (are) certain things that we can use to learn from, and then there are certain mistakes that people make that maybe it’s a little bit different conversation. But based on my understanding of what occurred, I feel like this is something that we can move forward with. I really do believe in the human being, I believe in the person.”

McVay indicated that he does not expect the NFL to immediately rule on the situation, if at all. He said earlier this week that the Rams were in communication with the league on the matter.

Kendrick, a sixth-round draft pick by the Rams in 2022, had previously started every game this season.

McVay said that Kendrick showed “authenticity of the regret for any sort of unnecessary distraction for this team.”

“What I also felt was a building, a team and a bunch of people that were willing to be able to extend their arms (and) welcome him back, and let him know that, ‘Hey, we love you and care about you and let’s learn from it.’”

Kendrick was previously arrested in Rock Hill, S.C. (his hometown), after police found him asleep in his car with “a small amount” of marijuana and a gun, according to reports. Kendrick had been dismissed from the Clemson football team a month prior to the arrest, and later transferred to Georgia. According to reports, the resulting charges were expunged from Kendrick’s records.

“I think you want to always understand what (the) circumstances (were) from each individual situation instead of saying it’s kind of a one-off,” said McVay. “I think there’s always some different layers that you weigh. What I think is important that doesn’t get lost on us (is) we want to be able to learn. We don’t want to make continued, repeated mistakes. It was a similar type of situation, but there were some different dynamics that existed in this one. Those are things that are important to us.”

(Photo: Michael Owens / Getty Images)

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